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Former Thai DPM Suthep urged to clarify secret deal with Cambodia

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BANGKOK, 2 September 2011 (NNT) – Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul has asked former Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban to clarify the secret deal on Thai-Cambodian maritime zone following a recent announcement of the Cambodian National Petroleum Authority.

Mr Surapong told the press that Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has already tasked him with investigating the alleged secret deal of the past government. He hence encouraged Mr Suthep to clarify this issue with the public for the benefits of the nation.

The minister stated that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs does not know what the deputy prime minister has discussed with the Cambodian side on the Thai-Cambodian maritime zone, and he will hence send a letter to Cambodia to ask for clarification.

Mr Surapong told the press that he will give a press conference on this issue once related evidence is ready. He believed that Cambodia itself has good intention towards Thailand after exposing this issue to the public, and the two countries have mutual benefits in the said area.

The Cambodian National Petroleum Authority recently issued a declaration exposing that former Deputy Prime Minister for Security Affairs Suthep Thaugsuban and ex-Defence Minister General Prawit Wongsuwan had travelled to Cambodia for secret talks on the Thai-Cambodian maritime resources.

The minister declined knowledge if the two opened a company to take advantage from this issue but he said the society will not mind if the probe finds no hidden benefits. He said the past government also did not cancel a Memorandum of Understanding on maritime resources as announced.

Mr Surapong also announced that he will start ASEAN tour soon with Brunei Darussalam as the first destination, to be followed by Indonesia, Cambodia and Laos. His visit to Cambodia will be made on 14 September 2011, during which he will try, if possible, to help secure the release of Thai Patriots Network coordinator Veera Somkwamkid and his secretary Ratree Pipatanapaiboon now detained in Cambodia.

Read more: NNT

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